“I want to read and study the Bible, where do I start?” This is something I am asked pretty often, and I am always encouraged to hear! God has revealed himself in the Bible, so when a person is saved by faith in Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 2:14-16) they naturally get serious about learning the Bible.
Here’s how I typically advise people who are looking for a place to start:
Start with one of the 4 gospel accounts, Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. These are a great way to learn more about who Jesus is and how we can be made right with God through Him and his work done on our behalf.
Pray before you read. Bible reading is part of a relationship with God. Open the conversation with God in prayer. There’s not a secret formula to praying, but here is a link to a prayer guide.
Consider just reading one paragraph a day. Bible reading is not a race, and you’re not trying to learn AR points 🙂 It’s better to get it than to merely get through it. Take some time to really take in what is being said. I use a pen and underline/circle words and phrases that stand out to me.
After reading the paragraph, ask some questions in view of the paragraph you just read:
- What did this teach me about God?
- What did this teach me about mankind/myself
- What did this teach me about the relationship between God and mankind/myself?
- Is there a commandment to obey or something I need to do after reading this?
Then pray again, as a closing to your focused time with the Lord.
Hope this is helpful. I’d also recommend making a daily habit of reading and reflecting on the Psalms, maybe a psalm a day or a chapter a day depending on the length of the psalm, and becoming familiar with the practical wisdom found in Proverbs.
If you have an interest in another, more indepth method of Bible reading and study check out the 3 step method in this post.
Or if you are interested in a Bible reading plan with significantly more content check this out.